Low Costs Inspire Trend-Bucking Homes in Houston

by Houston Agent

Big suburban homes, aka McMansions, can now be built for a fraction of boom-era costs in certain markets.

The Builder trade journal has stumbled upon an interesting anomaly in the Houston real estate market – rather than downsizing, an increasingly popular trend that has been increasingly covered by numerous outlets since the housing downturn commenced, builders in the Bayou City are taking advantage of the inexpensive land costs and building bigger.

With land costs in Houston at just $57 a square foot, builders are now able to construct larger single-family homes, or “McMansions,” as they were called during the boom years, for a fraction of the cost.

A Chicago Tribune brief on the homes did the math: a five-bedroom, 4,170-square-foot home, with 3 1/2 baths and a three-car garage, can now be built in Houston for as little as $239,000.

“Even as average new-home sizes have fallen slightly across the country,” the magazine writes, “builders in some markets are finding a profitable and underserved niche of buyers who need or want a house as big as a mansion with the price tag of a cottage.”

The Tribune notes that the properties are more like big boxes than multi-faceted homes, and as such, will never be confused for a Painted Lady; still, as Builder‘s editorial director, Boyce Thompson, consents, at that price, they are hard to resist.

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